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Election Watch: EC asks Eros to take down web series on PM Modi

PW Bureau

The watchdog cited its April 10 order in which it banned the screening of a biopic on Modi till the Lok Sabha elections were over to bar the streaming of the web series New Delhi: The Election Commission finally acted on Saturday as it asked Eros Now to immediately take down a web series on Prime Minister Narendra Modi and all related contents until further orders, citing the model code of conduct (MCC). The watchdog cited its April 10 order in which it banned the screening of a biopic on Modi till the Lok Sabha elections were over to bar the streaming of the web series. An official order released by the EC said, “Any biopic material in the nature of biography/hagiography subserving the purposes of any political party or any individual entity connected to it, which is intended to, or which has the potential to disturb the level playing field during the elections, should not be displayed in electronic media, including cinematograph during the operation of MCC.” The EC further said that the streaming of the five-episode web series, Modi - Journey of a Common Man, should be “stopped forthwith.”

What was the rationale?

After watching the trailer, the EC said that the web series showcased different phases of the Prime Minister’s life, right from childhood to becoming the PM of India. However, besides being the PM, Modi is also a political leader and a candidate in the ongoing Lok Sabha elections. Therefore, the series cannot be streamed, it said.

The backdrop

The order comes as a lot of hue and cry was raised by intellectuals, former bureaucrats and academicians over the EC’s failure to bar Eros from running the web series. The planned release of a biopic on Modi, starring Vivek Oberoi, had also come under fire, along with a BJP-sponsored TV channel, NaMo TV, which is available on all DTH platforms.